The COVID-19 pandemic can have a significant impact on mental health.
Help in Tough Times provides complete information from Alberta Health Services.
If you need to talk, call the 24-hour help line:
- Mental Health Help Line at 1.877.303.2642
- Addiction Help Line at 1.866.332.2322
- Kids Help Phone at 1.800.668.6868
In the Calgary Health Zone you can also call:
- the Distress Center at 403.266.4357
Airdrie Mental Health Resources
- Urgent mental health care is available at Airdrie Urgent Care Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Individual counselling is available during this COVID-19 pandemic via zoom, telephone or in-person to help people address and manage their emotional, psychological, mental health and/or addiction concerns. We are seeing individuals across the lifespan from children to seniors and can provide a referral to appropriate services and/or initial consultation with clinicians to discuss options.
- For information and resources specific to addiction and mental health, please contact Access Mental Health at 403.943.1500.
- Mental health professionals (for more information on counselling services, visit HelpSeeker)
- Your family physician
Alberta Health Services has also launched a free, text-based service called Text4Hope. By texting COVID19Hope to 393939, you will receive daily text messages on healthy thinking or actions to improve your mood.
In addition to our conventional transit services, Airdrie Transit runs ACCESS Airdrie – a shared ride, curb-to-curb paratransit service within city limits for eligible clients unable to use fixed route services. The City also provides specialized medical trips to Calgary for eligible clients.
Learn more about ACCESS Airdrie, the eligibility requirements and how to use this service here.
There are many supports available in Airdrie to help out our residents in times of need.The City has partnered with HelpSeeker, an online resource for residents to access social and health related service information during COVID-19.
HelpSeeker is a free location-based services network that will allow residents to find the closest, most relevant service for their needs with complete privacy. Organizations listed on HelpSeeker in Airdrie include counselling, addictions, abuse and domestic violence support.
HelpSeeker is available in the following languages:
- Persian (Farsi)
Not everyone is safe at home during COVID-19. If you or someone you know is feeling unsafe, please reach out. There are supports available in our community listed on our Domestic Violence Support Resources page.
Family violence includes physical, verbal, emotional, financial and sexual abuse, neglect and stalking. If you, or someone you know, may be experieincing family violence there are supports ready to help you.
Are you concerned about the well-being of a loved one? Here are some changes in behaviour that may indicate someone may need additional help and support.
- Change in presentation (went from being outgoing to depressed or angry)
- Change in sleep patterns
- Are they isolating more now?
- Loss of interest in activities
- Increase in drugs and/or alcohol use
- Sense of hopelessness
HelpGuide.org is also an excellent resource on mental health and wellness in additional to reaching out to the number listed at the top of this page.
More options are opening up for our residents, but there are still guidelines in place to keep everyone safe and healthy.
Ask yourself and others ‘how are you feeling’ and really listen to the answer. As we are faced with a time of uncertainty, it’s easy for worrying to take over your thoughts. The Mayo Clinic outlines a simple ‘grounding technique’ that may help reduce anxiety
As always, if things get too overwhelming to handle on your own, we encourage you to reach out for help using the resources listed at the top of this page.
We know that a lot of families are feeling stir crazy with kids being kept at home and running out of activities to do. Here are some resources to check out if you're looking for ideas to keep yourself and your kids busy.
Active for Life features articles and activities that may provide new things for you and your family to try at home. It also provides some insight for parents on topics such as anxiety, parenting though a pandemic and more.
Each week, Genesis place posts various activities, workouts, recipes and inspiration that you may find useful in your household.
Although there are no performances happening at this time, BCLT is providing content to engage audiences from a distance.
Good Housekeeping recently shared an article outlining various virtual tours of museums, zoos and theme parks that your kids can visit from the comfort of their own home.
It’s easy to lose track of time and days. We encourage you to pick up the phone and call a family member or friend. You may surprise yourself on how great you feel after the phone call. If you have Skype, FaceTime or another video call program – even better. If you don’t have anyone to call at the moment but you’d like to talk with someone please the numbers listed above are always available to you.
This is a challenging time for seniors in our community but physical distancing should not mean social isolation. Social isolation can have serious consequences, including increased risk of depression, poor general health and reduced quality of life. There are some seniors in our community who might not have friends or family nearby. While there are things that can put seniors at risk of becoming socially isolated, there are also things that can help seniors remain socially engaged, such as having a supportive social network and feeling connected and valued by others. Are there seniors in your life and/or in your community you could connect with, while following Provincial COVID-19 guidelines?
See links below for resources to help prevent social isolation in seniors:
Senior Centre's Without Walls provides opportunities to socialize, learn new skills and stay connected.
Learn about social isolation and its relationship to elder abuse and loneliness with this social isolation resource kit.
COVID-19 has caused some youth to feel isolated and disconnected from their friends and supports. Attend a workshop over the summer to learn strategies to help bridge the isolation gap, create connection, and learn about benefits of mindfulness during stressful times.
Register for a Community Education session here.
Descriptions of some available courses include:
Supporting Your Children to Have Healthy Relationships During Physical Distancing:
Physical distancing does not mean social and emotional distancing. Children and teens can and should stay social and emotionally connected with their peers and others. Healthy relationships and social connections are key in fostering positive social-emotional development and resilience. Strategies to help parents promote healthy and positive relationships during a time of increased physical distance will be provided. Parents will be empowered to have meaningful conversations with their children to build the parent-child relationship, as well as help their children develop and maintain healthy relationships and digital connection outside their immediate household. Strategies for engaging in digital connection safely will be discussed.
Emotional Regulation using Mindfulness:
Are you finding it difficult to find balance in this challenging time? Explore how, for most of us, our survival responses (fight, flight or freeze) are currently going haywire. Learn how mindfulness practices can help to regulate your child's emotions, boost immunity, decrease anxieties, improve focus, concentration, and improve our overall sense of well-being. Participants will be invited through guided mindfulness activities during the session.
Crisis Survival Skills - Supporting your Child and Teen during Stressful Times:
This presentation will provide parents a better understanding of how to support their child during a time of global crisis. The COVID-19 pandemic has led to an increase in psychological distress for some children and youth. Related stressors include social isolation, disruptions in routine, difficulty coping, and the disappointment of cancelled events and anticipated opportunities. This session aims to empower parents in recognizing signs that a child may be struggling and how they can support their child during this time of physical distancing and absence of in-person peer interactions. Parents will be provided with strategies and tools for helping their children and teens manage through this crisis and maintain social and emotional connection and well-being. Strategies discussed will include mindfulness, distress tolerance, and other coping skills.
Mental Health & Mindfulness in the Park is a series of fun activities with a mental health and wellness focus. Activities will be planned to allow for proper physical distancing and are open to families with school-aged children. These events will take place in Chinook Winds Park in Airdrie on Tuesdays from 1 -3 p.m. No registration necessary. It’s local.
Recently, Stepping Stones, an Airdrie YES member, ran an art contest to raise awareness for youth mental health.
First place winner, There Is Hope by Mackenzie C.
“Being given a label/diagnosis can sometimes force us to accept that there is no hope left for us to fight back against the stigmas associated with those labels. But even when our brain tells us there is no hope our hearts can. There is hope even when your brain tells you there isn’t.”
Second place winner, Loved by Charley F.
“When people are experiencing mental health issues, it can feel and be very isolating. Amongst this darkness the presence of love shines through, like the sun. A galactic reminder that you are loved and you are not alone.”
Third place winner, Self Love Medication by Kacey R.
“Too often in society we’re taught not to expose our weaknesses or troubles. This is the case, especially when it comes to the stigma surrounding mental illness and taking medication. But nobody should feel bad for taking medication. Your mental health is a priority, your happiness is essential and a necessity. It’s okay to do what’s best for you, it’s not (and never will be) a personal failure. Medication for your mental illness means you are aware of, and using the resources available to you so you can live the best life possible.”
The annual Mental Health Out Loud Art Contest gives grade 9-12 atudents a chance to express their views on mental health artistically. The goal is to reduce stigma around mental illness and encourage people to maintain their own mental health and support others.